Pros and Cons of Feeder Roaches (Dubia, Lobster, Discoid)
While many people cringe at the thought of roaches, the use of feeder roaches is becoming more and more popular. Three of the most commonly kept feeder roach are Dubia roaches (Blaptica dubia), Lobster roaches (Nauphoeta cinerea), and Discoid roaches (Blaberus discoidales). All three of these are nutritionally similar and are a healthier option for your reptile than crickets or mealworms.
- They are easy to keep, and easily bred.
- Nearly every reptile commonly kept in captivity can eat them, even the smallest neonates.
- They'll eat a wide variety or foods. You can even give your fruit and veggies scraps to them!
- Roaches have a higher meat-to-shell ratio, making them easily digestible and more nutritious than crickets or mealworms.
- Roaches do not fly, bite, jump around and are long-lived. They don't have a strong odor.
- And lastly, all three of these species are tropical. This means that even if you have escapees, they usually won't survive for long. (*note* These roaches are illegal in Florida, since they may be capable of living and breeding in that environment)
- The "eww" factor
- Are more expensive than crickets, mealworms and other more commonly kept feeders.
- You may have to order online since many chain pet stores do not sell them.
All in all, roaches are the superior prey item for Leopard geckos, bearded dragons, and other reptiles that are insectivores. They are quickly becoming the preferred feeder insect by many long time breeders, businesses and hobbyists. The combination of being low maintenance, easy to breed and the fact that they are suitable for most every reptile definitely makes them one of the best additions you could include in your reptile's diet.
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